Chapter 265: Rescue [Volume 4 – Perpetual Conflict]
After all doing all of that, Fang Tianlun instantly fell exhausted to the ground and could no longer stand up.
The amputated limbs and the flesh he had carved away turned into a pool of black liquid in the blink of an eye before vanishing completely.
Fang Tianlun’s ruthless decisiveness caused Qianye to raise his eyebrows. With what he just did, he could no longer return to being a champion in this lifetime, but at least he could keep his life and still be capable of self-care with the use of artificial limbs.
Still lingering within the shadow of the trees, Qianye turned toward a different part of the forest. Sounds of sniper fire rang out, followed by two brief but wretched cries.
Fang Tianlun’s previous shout and the grenade explosions attracted the attention of several Lone Ghost guards. They didn’t dare approach the origin power storm at first, but now that the chaos had receded, some of them wanted to see what was wrong. Unexpectedly, two of them died to Qianye’s gun the moment they emerged from hiding—the others ran away.
Only then did Qianye walk out of the darkness to check on Fang Tianlun who was lying feebly on the ground. He called Lu Yalan over and gave her some simple instructions. “Watch him but don’t get too close.”
Fang Tianlun was, after all, a champion. Although he had been badly wounded, it wasn’t impossible to drag a rank-six fighter with him if he used some secret techniques.
Qianye retracted his aura once again and walked into the darkness.
Moments later, a series of grenades exploded again in the heart of the manor, accompanied, from time to time, by the sound of sniper shots. Buildings collapsed and human bodies were blasted high into the sky amidst the flames.
Comparatively, the charred wreckage within the woods seemed pervaded by a deathly silence. Only the embers which had yet to burn out completely would release the occasional crackling sound.
Under the illumination of the flames, Fang Tianlun’s face was ashen and the corners of his lips twitched continuously. He suddenly glared at the woman who was curled up in the shadows and said coldly, “Well done! Half a lifetime of my hard work has been ruined in your hands! I’m sure you’re even clearer than me regarding the fate of those who betray Lone Ghost.”
Lu Yalan leaned on a big tree ten-odd meters away and spoke not a single word. On closer inspection, one would see that her face was pale, beads of sweat were hanging on the tip of her nose, and her hands were trembling continuously. She had worked under Fang Tianlun for many years and deeply understood this chief’s cruel and violent character. Although he was, at the moment, seriously injured and even had to gasp for air a couple of times while speaking, she still felt fear. This was likely an accumulation of his dominance over the many years.
The battle in the manor was now coming to an end. Or it could even be said that before Qianye’s night vision, speed, and sniping abilities, it was just a one-sided slaughter. Over half of the Lone Ghost guards were either wounded or dead, while the others escaped from the manor.
Qianye didn’t give chase as this was, after all, the regional Lone Ghost headquarters; they shouldn’t have forces more powerful than this in the province. Traveling toward the adjacent one through the wilderness at night would be a fairly dangerous undertaking, and Qianye would have already finished his business here by the time Lone Ghost’s newly assembled party arrived.
The manor calmed down once again. Qianye only cleared out the surroundings and returned to the woods without entering the building.
Fang Tianlun’s expression was now even more dispirited and his face was shrouded in a layer of darkness. Although he had made the prompt decision to cripple himself, a small amount of black titanium still remained in his body which he couldn’t expel no matter how hard he tried. At this moment, not much was left of Fang Tianlun’s origin power, and he was slowly losing his suppression over the invading black titanium. The distinct sensation of being corrupted inch by inch tortured him until he was half dead.
Qianye brought the antidote before Fang Tianlun’s eyes and said, “Answer my questions and this will be yours.”
Fang Tianlun’s depressed expression immediately became radiant as he stared fixedly at the medicine. He said with a trembling voice, “You won’t kill me?”
Qianye squinted his eyes as he gazed at Fang Tianlun and said indifferently, “It’s not impossible. Your survival actually isn’t that important.”
A strand of hope was ignited in Fang Tianlun’s eyes as he said while nodding, “I’m not a threat to you since I no longer have any hope of recovery after being wounded to such a state. I’ll tell you everything as long as you let me go!”
“Where’s the recipient? Who hired you?”
Fang Tianlun spoke without any struggle at all. Qianye wasn’t surprised with his cooperative attitude because anyone ruthless enough to cut off both arms to live apparently wouldn’t choose to bring about his own doom.
The client was a certain elder from Lone Ghost headquarters. Fang Tianlun himself wasn’t quite clear regarding the details. He only knew that the other party’s identity was quite extraordinary, and he might actually belong to aristocracy or even a great clan.
Originally, the client had dispatched a representative to oversee the operation, but he had actually died fighting at the recipient’s base. Thus, the recipient’s group, including Chen Lu, hadn’t been shipped away yet. They were still being held in the dungeon, waiting for the client to dispatch an agent to receive them.
Qianye glanced once more at Fang Tianlun and tossed the medicine to him. “Drink it and then take me there.” He didn’t fully trust Fang Tianlun’s words. Although most of them should be true, he felt that Fang Tianlun wasn’t necessarily ignorant about the client’s identity.
When Fang Tianlun mentioned that the client was likely from an aristocratic family, his expression flickered as he stealthily sized up Qianye’s weapons and apparel. From how the man was trying to judge his identity, Qianye knew that he might have actually heard something about the client.
However, the waters surrounding the aristocratic clans had always been very deep, and Qianye being capable of overturning the whole Lone Ghost headquarters despite not being a champion meant that his identity likely wasn’t ordinary either. Presently, even Fang Tianlun’s own life was in the hands of another. How would he dare reveal that he knew certain things which he shouldn’t?
Fang Tianlun bit down on the medication and swallowed it with a raise of his head. The medicinal effects spread out within moments, and his vitality was marginally restored. He then proceeded to clamber up.
The dungeon was under the largest building complex. Everything went smoothly with Fang Tianlun leading the way—Qianye killed off the remaining rank four and five guards without much effort, while the other servants and chefs were all ordinary people without any fighting capabilities.
Qianye instructed Lu Yalan to round them up and lock them in a room while he himself followed Fang Tianlun into the dungeons.
The entrance was behind a spiral staircase. A great steel door appeared before them after taking ten-odd steps down and turning a corner. There was a row of four handles, each with a number above them.
Qianye was slightly astonished. “A steam mechanism? What’s the password?” Without waiting for Fang Tianlun to reply, he casually pointed at the steel door and said, “You stand in front of the door.”
Fang Tianlun’s expression shifted slightly and his eyes flickered about. Finally, he stood before the door and said, “The password is 0704.”
Qianye glanced at him with a spurious smile and began to pull on the handles. Amidst the clicking sounds of rotating gears, the number above began to rotate and was soon at 0.
Afterwards, Qianye turned the other three handles in sequence. A gush of steam emerged from the crack in the door when the numbers were at 0704. The giant gear began to rotate, slowly drawing the panels of the heavy door to each side.
Qianye glanced upwards and found some steam seeping out from the gaps in the ceiling. If the wrong password were entered, this narrow corridor would be filled with high-temperature steam hot enough to scald even the powerful body of a dark race warrior.
Fang Tianlun walked obediently in front for the rest of the way. The dungeon was quite spacious and contained a couple dozen prison chambers of varying sizes. Most of them were currently empty, but the walls and torture equipment were dyed black with aged bloodstains, a testament to what usually went on around here.
Qianye followed Fang Tianlun to a small solitary chamber at the end of the dungeon. Held within was a completely naked woman with various cruel torture wounds all over her body and four thin chains attached to the wall piercing through her hands and feet.
The woman raised her head and revealed her delicate countenance upon hearing footsteps. She couldn’t see the visitors as her face was full of grime, and the messy hair stuck onto her face obstructed her vision.
She let out a snort and, although her aura was quite feeble, one could still hear the undisguised ridicule in her tone. “So, has the bastard Song Ziqi finally sent over more of his men? Heh, heh, you’d better be careful this time and not let him get killed like Liu He. Alas, I would advise you not to waste any more effort. Killing me will help you save some resources.”
Qianye’s pupils constricted slightly after hearing the name Song Ziqi. As he swept his gaze toward Fang Tianlun, the latter said softly with an awkward expression, “Liu He is that representative.”
That wasn’t what Qianye was asking about, but it was already meaningless to continue this conversation. He only smiled and raised his voice, “Contrary to appearances, you seem pretty strong-willed. I might just listen to your advice if I were Song Ziqi.”
Qianye directly crushed the lock, pulled open the prison door, and walked in. He then picked up the nearby bucket of water and poured it over the woman.
The woman let out a groan and immediately raised her head to swallow large gulps of flowing water. Apparently, she was extremely thirsty.
Qianye poured two more bucketfuls of water on her and washed away most of the grime. Only then did he draw his dagger and slashed at the chains, easily hacking the four fine-steel chains into several fragments.
“Bear with it.” Qianye pressed her down and tugged forcefully. A chain was drawn out of the woman’s shoulder accompanied by a gush of fresh blood.
The woman was exceptionally unyielding and didn’t even let out a groan. Even Qianye couldn’t help but admire her tenacity. He produced a medicinal syringe, injecting half into her arm while applying the remainder on her wound.
The woman lay there with her chest heaving up and down continuously. Her face recovered a bright red color only after a while, whereupon she turned to glance deeply at Qianye and said, “I’m Chen Lu. Who’re you?”
Qianye pulled Chen Lu up and said, “It’s not important who I am. I’m only responsible for delivering a package.”
Chen Lu’s eyes lit up as she sized Qianye up from head to toe before revealing a charming smile. “You’re the courier? Great! Please bring me away from this place and we can talk later. There’s a bastard called Fang Tianlun guarding this place, and he’s very powerful!”
“Did you mean him?”
Chen Lu glanced over and was astonished to find Fang Tianlun outside the door. Not only was Fang Tianlun’s aura extremely feeble, but he had also lost his hands. There was also a terrifying bone-deep wound on his chest.
Chen Lu stared speechless for a moment before asking, “You did this?”
Qianye pulled out his cloak from his backpack, tossed it to Chen Lu, and said, “Let’s leave first.”
Fang Tianlun said with a laugh, “You’ve found the prisoner, and I’ve also told you everything I know. Now, I’m completely useless to you. Can you let me go now?”
Qianye glanced at Chen Lu and said, “Look away.”
Seeing Chen Lu turn around as instructed, Fang Tianlun’s expression changed greatly. “You’re going back on your word!”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Chapter 3/6 of the week.